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Chapter 1

Psychology 2035 Chapter 1 Notes.docx

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Western University
Psychology 2035A/B
Doug Hazlewood

Chapter 1 Adjusting to Modern Life The Paradox of ProgressTechnological advances as impressive as they may be have not led to perceptible improvement in our collective health and happiness Despite technological progress social problems and personal difficulties are more prevalent and prominent than ever before o Technology provides us with countless timesaving devicesMost of us complain about not having enough timeCut back on sleep to juggle work follows people home family responsibilities o Range of life choices increasesoverabundance of life choices has unexpected costsErrors are more likely when decisions are more complexRumination postdecision regret anticipated regret Increased freedom of choice did not enhance tranquility or mental healtho Technology provided us with unprecedented control over the world around us medicine agricultureTechnology has a devastating impact on the environment Crises sound like technical problems that call for technological answers but they are also behavioral problems fueled by overconsumption and wasteThe Search for DirectionChange creates feelings of anxiety and uncertaintyo We try to alleviate by searching for a sense of direction Eg enrolling in selfrealization programs Promises to provide enlightenment to turn ones live around Experts say they are simply money making schemes Success of these programspeople are desperate for a sense of direction and purpose in their lives Some programs lead people down illadvised pathwaysEg Gain confidence by conquering physical discomfort Sweat lodgeendurance challengeCultsPeople join cults because these groups provide simple solutions to complex problem sense of purpose and a structured lifestyle that reduces feelings of anxiety Attracts people with alienation identity confusions and weak community ties SelfHelp BooksReaders have displayed a voracious appetite for selfhelp booksThe Value of SelfHelp BooksA few books have been tested in clinical trials with favorable results A great many selfhelp books offer little of real value to the reader o Shortcomings Psychobabble
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